winter things

Even though we live on the mostly flat prairie, we do have some really beautiful limestone bluffs and driving through the winding carved out roads is so lovely this time of year.

I never did get around to having a candy cane before the holidays were over, and now that the tree is down and the cheer is all packed up, the mood has completely passed. They’ll lay in a pile on the table until I’m sick of looking at them. I always think next year I’m not buying them, I’m NOT ..but then I fall for their nostalgic cuteness and dollar a box lure as soon as the seasonal aisle starts taking shape in late September. The grandma thrift in me has even tried to store the leftover canes till next year ..don’t ever do that.

Besides being kinder, gentler and more understanding in 2018, my goal is still one of working through & loving my yarn stash. I’m not setting limits or pre-building in guilt (because let’s face it I’m gonna buy yarn) but instead I’m trying to be less impulsive when making purchases and only bring in things that I truly adore. I’m also trying to change how I think of my big beautiful stash, fingering is not only fingering, but when doubled can be a light worsted, weaving my ideal length of scarf roughly uses 800 yards of fingering or 500 yards of worsted. I can mix and match weights and colors to create new weights and new colors, I am only limited by my own limits 💕

Starting off first things first, holding double strands of worsted to make a chunky cable knit hat and sipping on a cold creamy chai (even though we haven’t been out of single digit temps, I always prefer my drinks iced, my already overly hot bod can’t handle hot drinks in any season :)

..exactly kiki..

I can’t even remember the last time I knit this big, it mostly goes back to that hot body thing and the practicality of wearing fire. It’s also been a while since I’ve had a hat pattern smack me so hard I dropped everything and cast on for it right away (I hoard patterns too!) ..but the idea of using 2x the amount of stash yarn has this girl who can barely stand a jacket, contemplating all the double stranded woolies!

(On a side note, does this pom-pom make my hat look too commercial? Lex said she loved the hat, but didn’t love the pom-pom because it made it look like something you could buy in a retail store …what?!? I know memade is “on trend” and fast fashion is jumping all over the handmade look with bulky knits and leather tags on brims, but never did I think their mimicking of slow fashion style would make me question the commercialization of a flipping faux fur pom that I ACTUALLY MADE!)

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Project Bag: Field Bag by Fringe Supply Co.

Hat Pattern: Braided Cable Beanie by PremKnits 

Stash Yarn circa 2014: Hollywood by Cascade YarnsSadly this super washwool with holo sparkle carded right into the wool is discontinued :(

Driftless Scarf

When I was designing this scarf I really wanted something naturally simple that would build up softly in layers, something lovely that would help a beginner gain confidence while making,

but I also wanted it to be something expertly crafted and intricately clean, something that a more experienced maker would appreciate.

The finish leaves straight edges on all sides, ready to wear and beautifully minimal on its own,

but at the same time is the perfect surface for adding on a bold contrast or delicate lace edging. I didn’t want to overwhelm and fill the pattern with endless options, so I left it at two widths and a solid foundation with room for your creative variations. 💕

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Pattern: Driftless Scarf

(We live on the edge of the Minnesota River Valley known as the Driftless Area, surrounded by steep bluffs, where underground streams have carved out hidden caves and created natural cold springs. As a kid I would dig up kaolin clay in my backyard, look for fossils in the drift and occasionally find a bit of shale or mica for my pocket. I have always loved living in a place where some of the landscape was blurred smooth by glacial retreat and some was not, giving me the joy of having expansive fields of flat midwestern prairie to run through, mixed with high peaks and deep limestone valleys to marvel at.)

This scarf is a little bit that simple complexity 💕